Republican Rep. Paul Mitchell had already decided to leave office in January after serving two terms in the House representing Michigan's 10th District. He's now leaving as an independent. Mitchell tells CNN that he is leaving the Republican Party because he is disgusted by President Trump's attempts to overturn the election result. It's "unacceptable for political candidates to treat our election system as though we are a third-world nation and incite distrust of something so basic as the sanctity of our vote," Mitchell said in a letter to Republican leaders, warning that the president's actions could do "long-term harm to our democracy."
It's also "unacceptable for the president to attack the Supreme Court of the United States because its judges, both liberal and conservative, did not rule with his side," Mitchell told GOP leaders, per the Hill. Mitchell says he has notified the Clerk of the House that he is changing his party affiliation and will serve as an independent for the final weeks of his term. Lisa McClain, a Republican, will replace him when the new Congress convenes on Jan. 3. "Anybody that gets in politics has to be willing to accept winning and losing with some level of grace or maturity," Mitchell tells CNN. "I've done both. Losing is brutal, it's personal, it hurts, but if you're not willing to accept that, you should not be in political leadership." (Read more Republican Party stories.)